So I’ve fought people regarding university fees.
Now, I’m ready for another slugfest on probably the most discussed issue in Singapore’s education scene.
Is a polytechnic education worth it?
Ok. First things first — this argument might probably seem biased, but I can assure you it’s totally not — I’m a poly graduate.
Enough talk. Let’s rumble.
A pragmatic education
Given Singaporean’s propensity for all things pragmatic, I’m low key surprised that not many parents encourage their offspring to take up a polytechnic education.
IMHO, it’s the most pragmatic education in Singapore because it’s simply gearing the kids up for the real working world.
You’ve probably heard all these before but let me just remind you AGAIN.
Solving real-world problems? Check.
Heck, the very idea of a polytechnic is to prepare students for the cruel world workforce. I know where to place my kids if I intend to take their money earlier mould them for the real world.
End of further studies?
I know what you are thinking: a degree is a safety net and will get your kid ahead in life (that’s so 2018 but let’s just take a moment to entertain this thought).
Here are three facts to prove your archaic mentality wrong.
Fact 1: The number of polytechnic students accepted to local universities increased from 15 per cent a few years ago to 20 per cent in 2015.
Fact 2: And if your kid is good enough, no one is stopping him or her from reading law or medicine.
Fact 3: I will end this discussion with this 2016 (yes, I just used a 2016 article to debunk your 2018 mentality) article and walk quietly away.
Fact 4: What if you don’t want to pursue a degree? There are many shorter programmes also available for you to choose from that can help you get a job. Programmes such as short courses, specialist diplomas and Earn and Learn are all ready to help you stay relevant and prepare yourself against disruptions.
Diploma or A Level cert?
You tell me.
And that brings me to my next point.
If you don’t fancy “all-or-nothing” exams like PSLE and O levels, why subject your kids to ANOTHER one in the form of A levels?
That’s like child abuse. Kidding, that’s just the old fashion Singaporean education mentality: Study hard > go JC > go uni > get a job > die.
The stress is real for every JC2 student. Why? Because there are only two real options if you fail JC2, namely:
Spend another year and repeat JC2.
Drop out of JC and enrol in poly.
Because the A level cert is as good as a set square in the job market.
Now, this is not to say that poly kids have it easy. The pressure is still there, you still need to do your work (plus projects) but at least they have more control with the GPA system.
The variety of courses
Like our nasi padang or cai png, a polytechnic houses plenty of different courses.
You like music? There’s a Diploma in Sonic Arts.
Wanna train the next Joseph Schooling? How about the Diploma in Exercise and Sport Science?
A fledgling tree hugger can join the Diploma in Green Building Energy Management.
And over at the other side….
In all seriousness, having such a wide variety allows students to discover their interests and help them hone their skills in what they are passionate in. Like this dude who loves cooking, enrolled to Republic Poly’s Diploma in Restaurant and Culinary Operations and subsequently good results at the WorldSkill 2017 competition.
Who the heck are you?
Yes, yes, I’m not an expert. Why not hear from the experts at Republic Polytechnic’s Joint Admissions Exercise Parent’s Talk on Jan. 15?
More details here.
This article is brought to you by Republic Polytechnic.